MCC Council Presents Rs 222.04 Crore Budget for 2023-24- Congress Members Unhappy

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MCC Council Presents Rs 222.04 Crore Budget for 2023-24- Congress Members Unhappy

Mangaluru: The ruling BJP in the Mangaluru City Corporation council presented a Rs 222.04-crore surplus Budget for 2023-24 in the meeting of the council on Thursday, 9 March 2023. Presenting the Budget, the chairman of the Standing Committee for Taxation, Finance and Appeals Kishore Kottari said the total receipts have been estimated at Rs 1,143.61 crore and the expenditure at Rs 921.57 crore. The total receipts included the opening balance of Rs 367.2 crore and Rs 776.41 crore, expected during 2023-24.

Kotaari said that Rs 96 crore has been expected from property tax. The corporation has identified 2,09,412 properties, of which tax of 1.4 lakh properties has been collected for 2022-23. The tax of the remaining 60,000-plus properties is yet to be collected. As per the decision of the council, an agency will be appointed temporarily to measure the 60,000-plus properties and feed their data to the online system to enable an online tax payment system. In addition, a property survey has begun to identify such properties which are not on the tax network.

He further said that Rs 8 crore has been estimated from the advertisement fee and an equal amount is expected from the building licence fee. The civic body has plans to introduce an online system for applying for a building licence and paying the prescribed fee online. Accordingly, building plans will also be introduced online. Referring to other sources of own revenue, he said that Rs 65 crore has been expected from water bills; Rs 9 crore from trade licence fees; Rs 28.6 crore from solid waste management cess; Rs 13 crore from road cutting charges; Rs 2.5 crore from underground drainage fee; Rs 5.4 crore from rents; Rs 4 crore from Khata change fee, and Rs 43.9 crore from premium FAR.

The chairman said that Rs 205.22 crore is expected from the State government, Rs 195.6 crore from the Union government, and Rs 26.5 crore from Centrally-sponsored grants.
Referring to the expenditure, he said that Rs 27.15 crore has been reserved for solid waste management, Rs 7.65 crore for maintenance of streetlights, Rs 35 lakh for sports promotion, Rs 21.65 crore for maintenance of underground drainage system, Rs 5 crore for development and maintenance of rajakaluves, Rs 148 crore for construction and maintenance of roads, footpaths, and stormwater drains, and Rs 3 crore for health and sanitation.

MCC Mayor Jayananda Anchan and the deputy mayor presided over the council meeting.

Opposition MCC Council Congress Members Unhappy saying ” MCC Budget for 2023-24 Lacks Focus on Revenue Augmentation”

Reiterating its demand for a White Paper on the financial condition of Mangaluru City Corporation, the Opposition Congress in the council said on Thursday that the Budget for 2023-24 lacked focus on augmenting its revenue. Leader of the Opposition Naveen R. D’Souza said “The city had many low-lying areas which submerged during monsoon. The Budget did not make any mention of providing relief to people living in such areas. There is a need to introduce a single-window system for issuing licences to construct houses and other buildings. The Budget did not mention anything about it”.

“The Budget did not mention the steps that would be taken to rationalise the property tax revised recently without bringing it to the notice of the council. He said the civic body should maintain the unit-wise account of income and expenditure. For example, if a market is commissioned it should have clarity on the revenue earned (in terms of rent) from the market and the expenditure involved in its maintenance. It applied to all its assets. The civic body owed huge bills to contractors. The move to purchase own vehicles for solid waste management is not a wise idea as it will not be possible for the civic body to maintain them”, added D’Souza.

Former Mayor and Congress councillor M. Shashdhar Shetty said the Budget lacked clarity, and that the ‘demand, collection and balance’ of funds are not clear. Congress councillor A.C. Vinayraj said “The Budget did not mention how much-fixed deposit will be kept in the name of a girl child under ‘Mangaluru Sri Lakshmi Yojane’ as part of Beti Bachao. Other than the routine revenue generation accounts, the Budget did not mention anything about new schemes which will bring revenue to the civic body”. However, many ruling party councillors termed the Budget as excellent.

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